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South Korea Expanding Volkswagen Emissions Investigation To Include All Foreign Auto Manufacturers

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Following the opening of an investigation into Volkswagen’s use of a defeat device to fool emissions tests for the firm’s vehicles, the government of South Korea has decided to expand that investigation to include essentially all foreign car brands, according to recent reports.

The South Korean government previously decided to fine Volkswagen for its diesel vehicle emissions testing fraud. Following the recent decision to impose fines, the country’s government is now looking into previous emissions and noise-level testing results to see if everything is actually in order, or if the fraud has been more widespread.

The new investigation goes far beyond Volkswagen, though. It includes 23 different auto manufacturers and will be focused on 110 different diesel vehicle models, according to a director at ministry by the name of Hong Dong Kon.

Bloomberg provides more: “Automakers and component suppliers worldwide are facing increased scrutiny following a spate of scandals at companies including Takata Corporation, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, and Suzuki Motor Corporation. Earlier this month, South Korea blocked sales of 80 VW models and fined the company 17.8 billion won ($16 million) because the carmaker fabricated documents related to emissions and noise-level tests.”

Continuing: “Imported cars accounted for about 15% of the market in South Korea as of June, and the most popular choices include diesel models made by VW, BMW AG, and Daimler AG’s Mercedes-Benz. The Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association hasn’t received details of the investigation, the group said. A spokesman for Mercedes-Benz Korea said the automaker hasn’t received a notice from the environment ministry but would cooperate with the investigation if there’s a request. Calls to BMW Korea’s spokesman weren’t answered.”

Notably, Volkswagen is still unable to sell in the country, and may not be able to for some time, as it may take longer than the “typical 3 months” to regain certification owing to the need for “thorough” inspections, according to the ministry.

The results of the new investigation are expected to be announced within 3 months.

Image by InSapphoWeTrust (CC BY-SA)


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Written By

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.


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